Here are just three examples:
“…a student attains ‘higher order thinking’ when he no longer believes in right or wrong“. “A large part of what we call good teaching is a teacher´s ability to obtain affective objectives by challenging the student’s fixed beliefs. …a large part of what we call teaching is that the teacher should be able to use education to reorganize a child’s thoughts, attitudes, and feelings.” - Benjamin Bloom, psychologist and educational theorist, in “Major Categories in the Taxonomy of Educational Objectives”, p. 185, 1956
“This is the idea where we drop subject matter and we drop Carnegie Unites (grading from A-F) and we just let students find their way, keeping them in school until they manifest the politically correct attitudes. You see, one of the effects of self-esteem (Values Clarification) programs is that you are no longer obliged to tell the truth if you don’t feel like it. You don’t have to tell the truth because if the truth you have to tell is about your own failure then your self-esteem will go down and that is unthinkable.”- Dr. William Coulson, explaining Outcome Based Education (OBE)-1964
“Every child in America entering school at the age of five is insane because he comes to school with certain allegiances to our founding fathers, toward our elected officials, toward his parents, toward a belief in a supernatural being, and toward the sovereignty of this nation as a separate entity. It’s up to you as teachers to make all these sick children well – by creating the international child of the future”- Dr. Chester M. Pierce, address to the Childhood International Education Seminar, 1973
Or, how about this one, from the source of the quotes cited by Siggy:
"Education should aim at destroying free will so that after pupils are thus schooled they will be incapable throughout the rest of their lives of thinking or acting otherwise than as their school masters would have wished ... The social psychologist of the future will have a number of classes of school children on whom they will try different methods of producing an unshakable conviction that snow is black. Various results will soon be arrived at: first, that influences of the home are 'obstructive' and verses set to music and repeatedly intoned are very effective ... It is for the future scientist to make these maxims precise and discover exactly how much it costs per head to make children believe that snow is black. When the technique has been perfected, every government that has been in charge of education for more than one generation will be able to control its subjects securely without the need of armies or policemen."
Bertrand Russell quoting Johann Gottlieb Fichte, the head of philosophy & psychology who influenced Hegel and others – Prussian University in Berlin, 1810
Fichte was instrumental in creating the "climate of collectivism" in philosophy (as Stephen Hicks has referred to it) that prevailed in Germany during the late 18th and throughout the 19th century. In this counter-enlightenment climate, the state was worshipped as the source of all reality and that which brought meaning to life. Hegel, building on Kant, Rosseau and Fichte, would go on to write, "It must be further understood that all the worth which the human being possesses--all the spiritual reality, he possesses only through the State."
Hegel's heirs went on to divide into left- and right-wing camps. The charge of the left was led by leftists like Karl Marx, who transformed Hegel's "dialectic of Spirit" into an economic and social system that depended on godless dialectic of "oppressors vs oppressed." The right-wing Hegelians tended to stress the omnipotence of the state and were less willing to abandon a deity. For more than a 100 years, the two camps have been battling it out, each trying to impose their utopian vision onto the human species.
Both Hegelian offshoots summarily dispensed with free will and human freedom; and between them, they brought forth the philosophical abomination that we now call "postmodernism".
The 20th century was the battleground where the two totalitarian branches of the collectivist philosophers vied for spiritual and physical control over humanity. The amount of death, destruction and misery they ushered in is perhaps unprecedented in human history.
By the mid-20th century, the right-wing, or nationalist, Hegelians, or national socialists (Nazis) had been defeated by an alliance of the left-wing Hegelians and those who stood for human freedom and democracy. By the end of the century, the social systems favored by the Hegelians of the left had been exposed to the world for the lie and deception it was.
But, in this new century, both utopian systems have been given new life by recruited a potent new ally in their attempts to control the minds of men. That ally is postmodern philosophy and rhetoric.
Neither can hope to remain viable in a world where human thought is free; therefore, the goal for the last several decades has been nothing less than to undermine mankind's perception of reality itself. They have been most successful in this goal at all levels of education--elementary, high school and college.
If you can convince children that objective reality is an illusion; that A does not equal A; that black is white; and that good is bad; if you can make them accept that everything is subjective and relative; then you have successfully breathed new life into doctrines that by all objective measures and standards led to the death and misery of millions of people. Through the careful manipulation of language, everything can be distorted, without the messy need to resort to facts, logic, or reason.
For the children of postmodernism, what matters is not truth or falsity--only the effectiveness of the language used. Lies, distortions, ad hominem attacks; attempts to silence opposing views--all are strategies that are perfectly satisfactory if they achieve the desired effect--i.e., furthering the collectivist agenda. Ideas and reason make way for reification of feelings; and freedom is replaced by thought control and preservation of "self-esteem" at all costs.
The postmodern assault as it is used by the new totalitarians of the 21st century is a four-pronged attack to undermine
- Objective reality
- Reason and the rational debate of ideas
- Individual freedom and freedom of thought and speech
- Progress and capitalism
The strategies used are:
- The distortion of language and meaning to undermine the individual's perception of reality;
- The use of direct or threatened physical violence to suppress speech and individual freedom;
- Politically "correct" thought control and cultural relativism to undermine reason and rational debate;
- The promotion of environmental hysteria to undermine progress, industrialization and capitalism
These activities represent the most serious assault on reality, reason, and individual freedom since the defeat of the Hegelian twins in the last century.
Radical Islamic ideology is itself an unexpected combination of several toxic threads of Hegelian thought that have merged in the last 30 years. One thread of this meme is Islam itself--a purportedly "peaceful" religion that is actually historically based on military conquest and coercion of belief through jihad-- entwined with the remnants of the left- and right-wing totalitarian ideologies of the last century.
Thus we see how that 18th century philosophical climate of collectivism is still playing itself out several hundred years later. But the battleground in our time has returned to the battlefield of the mind, where strenuous efforts are being made by the remnants of both to claim the minds of the next generation.
Even 5-year olds and younger children are not too young for collectivist propaganda to be inculcated. Destroy free will; inoculate them with political correctness; treat the "insanity" of their attachment to parents, the Judeo-Christian tradition; or their country--i.e., all traditional Western values that brought civilization, individual freedom and economic progress; achieve a "higher order" of thought by showing them there is no right or wrong; good or evil.
After that, what will be left? The tyranny of the Collective; or the State or of Allah.
Today's political left likes to think they are so different from those Hegelian "fascists" of the 20th century. They appear to have a serious mental block, particularly when they speak so disparagingly of the National Socialist Party (better known as the "Nazis") who were simply one faction of Hegelians (socialists) who happened to be ascendent over the other faction (communists) vying for power at the time. Clearly they are victims of their own educational nihilism; and by lobotomizing themselves they have failed to recognize that there is no essential philosophical difference between the collectivist left and the collectivist right. Both are vying for absolute power as they preach the gospel of moral relativism and postmodernism.
In "The Dictatorship of the Do-Gooders and Soul Murder" I commented about a post of Betsy Newmark's that links to an article demonstrating how the "social justice" advocates of today's collectivists have taken over our K-12 education system and are determinedly undermining American values with their politically correct, multicultural and anti-capitalist curriculum. I wrote:
Make no mistake about it, what those teachers are doing is indoctrinating their students minds into an unquestioning obedience to the collective.
While our popular culture refrains sensitively from prtraying Islamofascists as villians in movies out of political correctness (yet another aspect of socialism's quest for "social justice"); it does not hesitate to make businessmen evil and malignant oppressors of the innocent. Individualism, the pursuit of profit, and private property is always bad and everyone must bow to the will of the collective. Islam (the name even means "submit"), even in all its terrorist varieties, does very well by this perverted moral standard.
One very harmful result of this sorry educational situation is that there are few people--even among those who stalwartly defend the free market, who understand and appreciate the essential morality of capitalism. Certainly our children, taught by ideological purists like the ones above who are leftover from the 20th century debacle of socialist/communist tyranny--never even have a chance to rationally consider any ideas not approved by their aggressively collectivist teachers, so intent at quashing those aspects of human nature they don't like.
This is child abuse, pure and simple. It is indoctrination. It is the willful manipulation of young minds which cannot never be allowed to develop even the capability of thinking for themselves. And these perverts call it "social justice."
In fact there is nothing that is "just" about it. It represents the worse kind of oppression with the goal of enslaving the human mind. And enslavement is exactly what is required to establish their socialist utopia, since it refuses to acknowledge the reality of human nature.
Socialist ideologues like those teachers know that in a free market of ideas, their pathetic system-- which has only brought human misery, slavery and death to those who have embraced--cannot function in a real world. Thus they must "stack the deck" and take absolute control over the thinking of the utopia's future citizens.
On some level they even understand that the very foundation of capitalism is human freedom in its most classical, liberal tradition. And that frightens them to death.
Capitalism's incredible production of wealth is the economic side-effect that occurs when political freedom is present. It has been argued, and I agree, that both economic and political freedom are absolute prerequisites for moral behavior.
Children propagandized by dogmatic tyrants like the ones above have had not only their capacity to think for themselves abrogated; they have had their capacity to make moral choices taken from them.
The moral case for capitalism is not taught in our schools, nor is it argued much in our culture. In fact it has been more or less universally accepted by the intellectual elites that systems such as communism and socialism are "morally superior" to capitalism (hence more "socially just")--even though in practice such systems have led to the death and enslavement of millions, and to those unlucky enough not to die from them, they have led to the most horrible shrinking and wasting of the human soul.
The truth is that neither socialism nor communism nor any kind of religious fundamentalism is compatible with morality at all.
If one's actions are coerced by the state or religion, or both; if human activity is indoctrinated, legislated, regulated and ordained down to the last minute detail--particularly to the degree we see in other countries of the world (e.g., Cuba, China, most Middle Eastern countries, North Korea, and now in Venezuela--then how can it possibly be argued that one's actions are moral? Human behavior under such systems is not voluntarily chosen, but actively coerced.
Morality, though, must always be a matter of choice, not mandate.
One cannot hold a person responsible for actions that are coerced or forced from him. Morality can only exist when freedom of action exists; and thus moral actions in any field of human endeavor require freedom.
Conduct may only be thought of as moral or immoral when it is freely chosen by the individual. It is only then that the moral significance of the action can be assessed. It is only when we are free to act that we can exercise moral judgement.
Taking the mind of a child and feeding it exclusively on your ideological pablum is not only the most cruel and abusive of behaviors; it also ensures that such a mind becomes cognitively stunted and morally impaired (much like the minds of the teachers who so proudly perform such oppressive acts).
All totalitarian/collectivist idealogues will casually and deliberately use and brainwash children. Whether it is Fidel and his communist indoctrination in Cuban schools or the mirror image of the Palestinian's using a Mickey Mouse look-alike to make little children comfortable with the idea of murdering Jews. Both are not above the atrocious behavior of hiding behind children and using them as their shields; parents thourougly schooled in the collectivist propaganda will happily send their children to blow themselves up for Allah and celebrate when they are successful; and all of them know full well that decent people are repulsed at the idea of retaliating against innocents. But the collectivist--both right and left--could care less about the harm their despicable behavior does to the souls of the children who are used or brainwashed in such a manner. For them the individual, whether a child or adult, has no meaning except insofar as they can advance the ideology. Their total worth is only equivalent to their willingness to be fodder for the good the "cause."
Modern-day educators, psychologists, and assorted self-esteem gurus, multiculturalists, and PC policemen are the natural-born heirs of Kant, Fichte, Hegel and many others who have refined and advanced the postmodern irrationality. They are the ones who are in charge of educating your children into the accepted dogmas that now are espoused by the left in this country.of political correctness and multicultural religion. They are the people who are determined to have George W. Bush impeached--or declared clinically mentally ill; they are determined to undermine American values; to portray Republicans and conservatives as absolute evil. By this behavior they signal how desperately afraid they are that there are still many individuals and pockets of people who are willing to think outside of the ideological box they have created and who have not been fully lobotomized by their educational system.
Only those whose brains have been damaged by a defective educational system to begin with could adhere on the one hand to a philosophy advocating moral relativism and subjectivism with unapologetic dogmatic absolutism.
What is outrageous is that anyone--anyone who is capable of thinking anyway--could take these postmodern, brain-damaged collectivists seriously.
Progressing from education to indoctrination, postmodernism has ushered in an age of educational nihilism that seeks to destroy the minds of the next generation of Americans. The good news is that the biggest impediment to their grandiose plans is that they earlier suceeded in destroying their own minds on the bullshit they now force-feed the children of today.
And, no matter how they feel about it, reality, truth and reason must eventually prevail.